High strength and ultra-high performance concretes are not just cutting edge technologies for scientific research, but also continue to find new applications in practice.

Whether in dealing with the slenderness of building components (e.g. design) or dimensional instability under extreme conditions (e.g. earthquake stresses), high and highest material properties (compressive and flexural strength, elasticity and ductility) are finding entry in concrete technology. Durability and high strength of concrete are thereby interdependent.

What is High Early Strength Concrete?

Concretes with high compressive strength (> 60 MPa) after 28 days are classified in the high performance concretes group and are used in many different structures due to their versatile technical characteristics. They are often used in the construction of high load bearing columns and for many products in precast plants. High strength concrete is suitable for application in high rise buildings, especially in earthquake areas.

In addition, pre-stressed bridge constructions require high compressive strength leading to wider spans and slender bridge dimensions. Furthermore, the outstanding mechanical characteristics of high strength concrete is utilised in structures exposed to high mechanical and chemical loading like industrial floors, traffic areas, offshore structures, sewage treatment plants and engineering structures like hydropower plants or cooling towers.

Advantages of High Early Strength Concrete

For ready mixed concrete, the advantages of early and high strength concrete are:

  • Faster construction time
  • Development of most cost-efficient mix designs
  • Lower concrete consumption (when thinner elements can be
  • designed)
  • Improved site capacity by increasing formwork rotation
  • Improved service life of structure

For precast concrete, the advantages of a fast and defined strength development are:

  • Rapid rotation of moulds and finishing of concrete surfaces
  • Early pre-stressing at low temperatures
  • Reduced energy consumption for heat or steam curing
  • Development of most cost-efficient mix designs
  • Reduced cycle times will allow the reduction of the number of moulds required
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